Thirty four years ago.
This past year was a full one! Here is me last year;
I've shrunk a bit since then. And I can now eat ice cream again, although for the most part I'm supposed to follow a diabetic diet to avoid or put off developing Type II diabetes after two gestational diabetes pregnancies. So about half the time these days I will turn down dessert (but likely not on my birthday). And here is me yesterday:
It's been a heck of a year, and I reckon the best one yet. We moved, had a baby, brought her home, snuggled in, welcomed spring and summer, went camping, welcomed my niece Birch, splashed around in the sun at the water park and at White Rock beach, welcomed fall, hosted thanksgiving and christmas turkey feasts, welcomed my nephew Myles, and I quit my job, and managed to avoid post partum depression or anxiety for the first time ever (WOOT!). I'm grateful for everything I have. Some days the sparkle feels like it gets a bit dull but it shines nevertheless. Like Friday morning when I realized I'd spent most of the past 4 days in the same room, with the same people (the downside to the open concept living space), and I was sick of all of them. Fortunately that evening snow began to fall and our neighbourhood transformed into a winter wonderland, muted sounds and bright winter days changing up my inner landscape just enough to relieve my cabin fever.
When Amarys was born, this verse brought me a sense of grounded calm, and the knowledge of God's grace;
Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you;
not as the world gives, do I give to you.
Let not your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful.
~John 14:27My birth was full of peace, and this past year has been peaceful also. Riley's birth brought me healing, and Amarys' brought me peace. Ayden's birth brought me experiential knowledge, and Matthew's tested me with fire. Life is a long journey and each season has its beauty and its dirt, so I know this peaceful bit will eventually be interrupted, but I feel like this peace is something more than a product of the events in my life, and is something I've learned, a character quality that I will in some measure be able to take with me for the rest of my life's journey.